Shut up and Write!

“Shut up and write”, the pinned sign says across from my writing chair.  “Every chapter should reveal a clue,” and “What am I trying to show?” and “Good writers don’t equivocate–tell your story!”  Good advice, all, and prominent–but instantly invisible once I sit down to bang out the words.

It’s as if, by sliding my butt onto the cushion, a tunnel forms, leaving me deaf, dumb, and blind to the outside world.  No matter how hard I prep, how determined I might be, I am once again alone in the dark, with no idea of where to go.  I had a map, I had a plan, but must have left them in my other shirt.  Somewhere not here.  And I can feel the panic.  What was I going to say?

So I fiddle and fumble and stumble around until focus drops in, and then I begin.  Again.  And here they come, my long-lost friends.  The words.  The stories.  They didn’t forsake me, or I them.   It’s just the game.  The stupid game.  “Count to ten, then come find me…”  Hide and seek.

Must it always be an ordeal?  For once, can’t you just wait where I asked you to?  Where I left you?  Please?

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